Parser compliance

Paul Prescod paul at
Fri Nov 19 18:55:24 GMT 1999

David Megginson wrote:
> > It's a bit disingenuous to criticise what was far and away the best
> > solution at the time. It was no more or less a money-grab than the
> > current market.
> DTDs should have been just part of the solution, not *the* solution.

But why did these projects exist?

Let's say the US military wants to exchange parts information with the
Canadian government. This is a horrendous problem technically,
politically and economically. It would be a hundred million dollar
project (if it were ever completed) and the output would be not a single
line of software but rather an extremely large DTD or set of DTDs and a
very large design document. It seems massively unfair to act as if the
act of producing this specification is not "real work" because it is not

A separate issue is which is more important: the document or the machine
readable DTD. Tim claims that the DTD is of minor importance. I would
argue even with that but it is still different than saying that the
effort that produced the DTD was itself a waste or a sham.

 Paul Prescod  - ISOGEN Consulting Engineer speaking for himself
Bart: Dad, do I really have to brush my teeth?
Homer: No, but at least wash your mouth out with soda.

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